The Overnight Singing Sensation – Fantasy vs. Reality

Miami Vocal Lessonson October 7th, 2012No Comments

Have a great voice? Want to be a singer? There have never been as many opportunities to jump-start your musical dreams come as there are today. From England to Mexico to Australia, televised competitions catapult singers to fame, and the U.S. is no exception. Your friends are probably telling you to audition. You’re good. Really good. And if Susan Boyle can do it, why can’t you? If the audition process isn’t for you, you can put your songs on YouTube and watch your video go viral. Isn’t that all Justin Bieber had to do?

Most amateur singers don’t understand that what people expect from you as a professional is totally different from what you can get away with as an amateur. When you’re an amateur, your audience is supportive – and forgiving. When you’re a professional, they are highly critical. They have a right to be, because they paid money to come and see you. You need to prove to them that you’re worth it.

No matter how beautiful your voice may be, if you’re serious about going pro, you need to do these three things:

1. Get professional help – The voice is a complex musical instrument instrument, just like the piano or the violin. To learn to play the violin, chances are your first step after buying one would be to find the best teacher you could afford. Yet for some inexplicable reason, a surprising number of novice singers hoping to win national competitions and get record deals think that they don’t need any help.

It’s hard to objectively assess your sound when your instrument is part of your body. Think about the difference between how you think you sound and what you hear when you listen to a recording of your voice. Your first instinct is to say that the recording is distorting your voice, right? That’s why you need a voice coach with a trained ear and proven techniques to guide and teach you as you develop your polished and professional sound.

2. Realize how much you need to learn – A good voice coach will tell you up front if you’ve got the raw talent. S/he will assess your strengths and weaknesses and customize a step-by-step plan to help you reach realistic goals. Once you get this feedback, you’ve got to internalize it. I did this by studying performers who inspired me, comparing their singing to mine. It’s an intimidating exercise, but music is an intimidating business. If you want to be successful, you’ve got to face the good, the bad, and the ugly.

YouTube is a great place to start. Find the types of music and the singers that interest you. Study their breathing, their phrasing and timing, their tone, note choices, improvisation, and the emotion and sincerity they put into their delivery. Watch their body language and movement, their energy, facial expressions, and when you can find it, their interaction with their band and audience. Next, go to hear live performances as often as possible. Notice what you like and what you don’t, and why.

As you start to appreciate how much you’ll need to learn, don’t be discouraged. Remember, you have the raw talent. The only way you can reach your true potential is by accurately mapping the journey you need to take to get there.

3. Practice, practice, practice. Millions of people have the voice needed to pursue a singing career. What separates the wannabees from the winners isn’t luck or even talent; it’s hard work and persistence. That means practicing every day to hone your craft. If you want people to take you seriously, you have to be serious.

Follow these steps and you will get better and better over time. As you put yourself out there, you will be noticed. More importantly, when you’re noticed, you will be ready. That’s how you become the overnight singing sensation that is every amateur singer’s fantasy and the successful singer that is every hard-working professional’s reality.

By Liz Bieler

No Responses to “The Overnight Singing Sensation – Fantasy vs. Reality”

Leave a Reply